Looking for an tropical holiday without breaking the bank? From Miami to the Maldives, check out my travel tips and best travel deals to find the perfect long haul holidays on a budget.
The trend for Irish holiday-makers seeking more authentic experiences and adventure holidays is definitely on the rise! There are now over 40 direct flights each week to the Emirates and Asia from Dublin airport, which is resulting in very competitive airfares. Long haul destinations grew by 19% in 2017 from Dublin airport alone! New direct flights to Hong Kong and Beijing have opened up Asia even further and Qatar Airways direct links to Chang Mai in Thailand and Penang in Malaysia means you only need one stop to get to these tropical destinations. But is it possible to find long haul holidays on a budget?
Hello from Kerachut Beach, Penang. We took a boat through a mangrove in the Penang National Park into the sea and arrived here, only to find it deserted ❤️ There is a small turtle sanctuary here and it was also the starting point for our jungle trek. Beautiful spot – see more on my stories 👆 . . . . . . . . . . . #penang #malaysia #malaysiatrulyasia #beachlife #beaches #desertedbeach #kerachutbeach #penangnationalpark #sand #travelgram #travelblogger #travelphotography #travelblogger #wearetravelgirls @malaysia.truly.asia @visitpenang #beachwalk
The biggest mistake people make when booking long haul holidays is not comparing package deals with holidays that are booked independently. Sometimes specialist tour operators will be able to offer cheaper packages than if you bought a flight and hotel separately. They may book a larger number of rooms in a particular hotel or get discounted rates from an airline which will offer you a better rate than if you booked direct.
Similarly with airlines, low cost carriers, like Norwegian and WOW air charge high amounts for baggage, allocated seating, even meals on long haul flights. Compare these with airlines such as Turkish Airlines and Ethiopian Airlines who include a generous baggage allowance, all meals and even drinks on board. My advice is always compare like with like when booking any holiday. Here are some long haul holidays on a budget that I have found with travel agents and tour operators in Ireland. With most of these holidays you can add on extra nights, either with the travel agent before travel, or decide to book independent options and tours locally.
Mexico: Flights, Transfers & 5 * All Inclusive Hotel, 14 Nights, €1515
Stay at the 5* Grand Bahia Principe Coba for two weeks from only €1515 next Summer! This hotel receives great reviews on tripadvisor and was awarded a certificate of excellence. There are two lake-style pools with swim-up bars, where you can take advantage of the all-inclusive arrangement . There are six à la carte restaurants as well as the main buffet restaurant. Local branded drinks, including cocktails and wine are served free of charge until 11pm in the bars and 2am in the disco. There are also 24 hour snacks available. The rooms are not standard either. You will have a superior junior suite complete with a hydro-massage bath. There are numerous watersports available on the beach and plenty of sports facilities and entertainment options including shows and live music. Night owls will love la Rancherita disco while kids will be entertained by the kids clubs, mini water park and lots more activities.View offer here
Sri Lanka, Flights, Transfers & 4* All Inclusive Hotel, 7 Nights, €1039
I climbed #sigiriya today, all 1202 steps 😱 It’s often referred to as the 8th wonder of the world and once you climb it you will see why. It was a fantastic experience and I’m delighted I made it to the top! How the monks carried up stones to build their city in the 5th century is mindblowing! The climb wasn’t that difficult but it was quite scary in parts. The fact that it is a holy day here didn’t help, it was packed! Check out my stories for more 👆 . . . . #srilanka #sigiriyarock #sigiriyasrilanka #wonderoftheworld #wonder #climb #climbing #hiking #proud #travelblogger #irishtravelblogger #asianwonders #wearetravelgirls #picoftheday #dreamdestinations #passionpassport @srilanka @srilanka.travel @destination_srilanka @turkishairlines @travelcounsellorsireland #widenyourworld #lovemyjob #monks #monastery
This is a great deal to experience one of South East Asia’s real treasures. The price includes flights and a seven-night stay with all meals and drinks included. I went to Sri Lanka last year and loved it. There is so much to see and do, you really need to look beyond the beaches. I suggest booking this beach week but adding on at least 4 / 5 days in the cultural centre. This can be done with Tropical Sky at the time of booking or directly with a tour company locally. There are eight UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Sri Lanka (FYI Ireland has three), thousands of elephants, hundreds of leopards, tea plantations, amazing food and it is so cheap on the ground. The island practically screams adventure. I climbed the 660 foot tall Sigiriya rock fortress (1202 steps ) and felt a great sense of achievement, you can read my highlights of Sri Lanka here.View offer here
Thailand: Flights, Transfers & 4* Khao Lak, Hotel, 7 Nights, €1049
Luxury long haul specialists Hayes & Jarvis, have some great deals to top class hotels in Thailand for next year. My personal favourite is the highly rated Apsara Beachfront Resort and Villas in Khao Lak. This is the perfect spot for couples who are looking for a relaxing holiday on a superb beach. Price includes airport transfers, an upgrade to a superior room and a local free Thai cookery class. Flights are via Hong Kong with Cathay Pacific so if you wish to add on a few nights in Hong Kong or in any other part of Thailand just talk to the staff in Hayes & Jarvis. Check out the reviews on tripadvisor if you still need convincing.View offer here
Mauritius : Flights, Transfers & 4* All Inclusive Hotel, 7 Nights, €1319
Mauritius, one of the Indian Ocean’s most idyllic islands offers year round sunshine, white sandy beaches, but surprisingly so much more! Explore the hidden waterfalls at the heart of the jungle and go in search of some of its extraordinary wildlife. Veranda Pointe aux Biches is a hotel that epitomises laidback luxury – guests are encouraged to go barefoot during their stay. Feel relaxed in the wellness lounge, enjoy some spa treatments or try the host of watersports available. If you fancy a change of scene, you can pop into the nearby village of Grand Baie, which has a wide selection of restaurants, shops and bars. Highly rated on tripadvisor, with all meals and drinks included in the price, this is excellent value for such a great hotel.View offer here
Maldives: 4* Cinnamon Dhonveli, All Inclusive, Flights & Speedboat Transfers, €1699
If a trip to the Maldives is on your bucket list but your bank balance is telling you not to go – then this is the place for you! The Cinnamon Dhonveli is one of the best value ALL INCLUSIVE resorts in the Maldives. With all meals and drinks included in the price of your stay, you will need very little spending money. Located just 25 minutes by speedboat from Male airport and surrounded by stunning views of the Indian Ocean, this tropical island is highly rated on tripadvisor and is extraordinary value for a week in the Maldives!View offer here
Cuba & Toronto : Flights, 3 Nights Toronto & 7 Nights All Inclusive in Cuba, €1398
This two centre holiday combines the vibrant city of Toronto with an all inclusive stay in a 4* hotel in the beach resort of Varadero in Cuba. Price includes flights with Air Canada, airport transfers, baggage and Cuban visa. You can also choose to add on a stay in Havana, just speak to the team in Travalue and they will tailor make the itinerary for you.View offer here
Flights & 2 Night Stays in New York & Miami & 10 night Caribbean Cruise €1590
New York and Miami, two of our favourite American cities are included in this fourteen night trip of a lifetime. Enjoy a two night stay in Times Square New York followed by a two night stay in South Beach Miami, before boarding MSC Divina for a ten-night Caribbean cruise. Visit Antigua, Martinique, St Maarten and lots more. With numerous dining options including Eataly, a Broadway-size theatre and an infinity pool that offers superb Caribbean seaviews, you will be spoilt for choice for things to do.View offer here
Emirates & Dubai, Flights, Overnight stay in Abu Dhabi & 7 Night Cruise, €1099
Cruise the Emirates on MSC Splendida and and visit Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Sir Bani Yas Island, Doha and Bahrain. Price of €1099 in February includes flights, transfers, overnight stay in Abu Dhabi and seven night cruise with meals and entertainment included. Upgrade to a balcony cabin for an additional €220 or add on the all-inclusive drinks package for €203 per person.View offer here
Hopefully one of my long haul holidays on a budget will suit you but if you still need inspiration, check out all my long haul destination guides here. All prices are correct at the date of issue, 15th November, but are subject to change.